Two Cents worth? Yep

Did you know that there was actually a 2-cent coin that was produced by the United States mint?

The Two Cent piece officially ran from 1864 to 1872, but there was a copy made for collectors in 1873.

photo courtesy of Wikipedia.com

The economic turmoil of the American Civil War caused any and all government-issued coins to vanish from circulation (they were hoarded by the public) Even the Indian Head cent—which was made of bronze—was pretty much gone from circulation (The Coinage Act Of 1864 authorized the cent to switch to a bronze composition and the production of the Two Cent coin).

Even though there were other mints actively producing coins at the time, this coin was only produced at the mint based in Philadelphia.  What this means is that there will not be a mint mark anywhere (which is the way this mint was marking the coins until 1980).

Two of the more famous die varieties happened in 1864.  One is called the “large motto,” and the other is called the “small motto.”  These two varieties deal with the motto, “In God We Trust.”  The words IN, GOD, and TRUST has some small differences, while the word WE has the most differences.  It all hinges on the size of it, and it is very noticeable.  The WE on “large motto” is larger than the WE on the “small motto.”

Large motto photo courtesy of Wikipedia.com
small motto photo courtesy of Wikipedia.com

The “small motto” is much scarcer than the “large motto.”  The best idea is to keep an eye out for it in case you might walk across a case full of coins at a mall, or happen to be at a coin shop or show.

Have you seen one of these really cool coins?

Look at all of the different colors on glassware!

Pink, green, black and even red are only a few colors that you will see on glassware.  There are so many that it will make your head spin!  Here are some of the colors that you may have not heard of:

Jadeite—this is a type of glass for the table made of Jade-green opaque milk glass.  Jadeite was popular in the United States in the mid-20th century and has a blue variety that’s called “Azur-ite”.

MONAX—this is a translucent white glass that has a faint blue hue when held up to the light. This unique colored glass is sometimes mistaken as milk glass (which is whiter in color).

Ruby Flashed glass—this is created by coating a clear glass with one or more thin layers of colored glass (this is also known as flashed glass).  The colored glass can be either partly or completely etched away by using items like acid or sandblasting.  This results in spots where the colored glass has been removed.

This is a ridiculously small portion of all the colors that you will run across.  What have you seen?

The not-so-famous furniture styles

There are the ultra-famous styles of furniture that everyone knows about (like Chippendale, Hepplewhite, or even Victorian) but did you know that there were quite a few styles that often were around with the more famous counterparts that are just not that well known?

The first one that I heard about that is like this is called DIRECTORIE.  It ran from 1795 to about 1804 and ran the same time as the Sheraton and Duncan Phyfe styles (the Duncan Phyfe style is also called the Federal Style).  Following the French Revolution, France was ruled by five directors.  Any and all signs of royalty were thrown out the window, and furniture design was controlled by a Jury Of Arts and Manufactures.  Greek, Roman, and even Egyptian influences are strong with the DIRECTORIE style.

The next style is called EASTLAKE and it ran from about 1879 to 1895.  It ran the same time that Late French Provincial and the Victorian Styles were going on.  This style was created by Charles Eastlake and achieved some popularity here in America and in England as well.  The style had some Gothic flair going on and had some Japanese ornamentation as well.  Cherry and Fruit were extensively used in the furniture of this style and had tile panels and conspicuous hardware that were used for decoration.

This is only a small portion of all the fantastic styles that I’ve heard of that really aren’t that well-known.  What kinds of styles have you heard of?

A little history of cameo jewelry

Cameo jewelry has been a popular item for many years now, and it comes in many scenes and sizes.  Just what in the world is cameo jewelry?

Cameo is a method of carving an image into stone or shell that has a flat edge to it.  More often than not, you will see a product that has multiple colors in it to give an extra pop to the carving.  The cameos that are made of semi-precious stone like onyx and agate have examples that date all the way back to ancient Greece and Rome.  The ones that are made of shell are more modern.

The cameo that is pictured above is the type that you would find that’s made in the late 1800’s into the 1900’s.  As you can see, the piece features a picture of a person.  I’ve seen several different motifs including more than one person, an animal, and the occasional flower.

The price of all cameos depends on what it’s made of and the quality of the carving on it.  Some of the places to check are the hair, nose and facial features.  The more features that are present and are vivid, it makes the cameo just that much better.

The great thing about this type of jewelry is that it can fit any budget and liven up any outfit at the same time.

What examples of cameo jewelry have you found?

A brief history of the Westmoreland Glass Company

The Westmoreland Glass Company was founded in 1889, and was based in Graceville, Pennsylvania (which is not too far from Greensburg, Pennsylvania).  The company was run by brothers George and Charles West, which were the majority shareholders of the company.

When the company opened, the main production was pressed glass tableware lines, mustard jars, and even candy containers.

The brothers ran the company until 1921, when George West went on to run his own company.

The company was then run by Charles West and his close friend Ira Brainard.  When this happened, the name of the company changed from Westmoreland Specialty Company to Westmoreland Glass Company.  Shortly after the change, Westmoreland started to produce cut glass and even high-quality hand decorated glass.

The 1940’s saw James H. Brainard (Ira’s relative) take over ownership of the company.  At this time, they went with mass produced milk glass and discontinued the hand decorated glass.

The company eventually went out of business in 1984, and the building was apparently converted into a storage facility.

There’s a very wide range of glassware that Westmoreland produced over the many years they were in business.  This can be very helpful for a collector that’s on a very strict budget, and they can find something to decorate with or collect for not much money.

What kinds of Westmoreland pieces that you have found that you treasure?

The green flag is about to drop on the Indianapolis 500. . . from 1972?!?

The Indianapolis 500 race (also known as the Indy 500) is a race that’s held every year at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and it’s been held there since 1911.

The photo-finishes, drinking the milk in victory lane and even the fabled yard of bricks at the start-finish line are just some of the things that you think of when it comes to this race.

One of the years that is memorable for this race is 1972.  Several important things happened during 1972, and this is the first year that Jim Nabors was invited to sing the pre-race song “Back Home Again In Indiana.”  It was the start of a 36-year tradition for Jim Nabors performed nearly every year from 1972 to 2014.

The second thing that happened in 1972 is that this is the first year that the cars were allowed to use bolt on wings.  This helped the speeds climb drastically—Bobby Unser won the pole with a remarkable 195 mph, and the average race speed was 162 mph (that speed would stand until 1984).

The 1972 race was also the first year where the Electro-PACER light system was used during the caution laps at Indy.  The officials at the speedway also did not use the pace car during the cautions, and this enforcement tool was used at Indy for 7 years (there were some controversies with the system in the years to come).

There are also many collectibles for the race, and one of them is this souvenir tumbler by Libbey Glass.

The Libbey Glass Company made this terrific souvenir glass celebrating the 1972 race. The glass features a blue race car scene on the front with a yellow 1972 at the top, and the back even has all of the race winners from 1911 to 1971 in blue.

You can see this great tumbler in my Etsy shop here, head on over and check it out!

What a great gift for a fan of the race!

There is such a thing as a Malt Nutrine serving tray?

Advertising is a fun area to collect—you never know what kinds of pieces you will run across.  You might find a piggy bank advertising a local bank, a ruler advertising a grocery store or even a baseball program advertising Spalding baseballs.

Another area that advertising collectors buy are serving trays.  There are quite a few advertisements that you will find on a tray—they range anywhere from Coca Cola to Budweiser.

Did you know that Anheuser Bush made a serving tray for a product they made that was called Malt Nutrine?

image 0

Malt Nutrine was made by Anheuser Bush in 1905, and it was a non-alcoholic beverage.  Not only that, it was thought that Malt Nutrine could help cure insomnia.

This would be a killer piece to display with fountain drink collectibles.  You can see this terrific serving tray in my Etsy shop here.  Head on over and check it out!

Take a seat and look at some chair designs!

When it comes to furniture, there are quite a few different designs and forms out there—there’s more than enough to make your head spin.  This is also very true for chairs—take a seat and look at several of the designs that you will run across when you are out at your favorite place to shop:

Fauteuil—this is an upholstered armchair that has open sides, and this type of chair has also been referred to as an elbow chair.

*Picture courtesy of Wikipedia*

Adirondack chair—this is a very distinctively styled chair for the outdoors, and it is usually made out of wood.  Originally, the chair was made with a flat seat and a flat back composed of 11 flat wooden boards (it also featured wide armrests that are parallel to the ground).

*Picture courtesy of Wikipedia*

Ladderback chair—this chair gets its name from the horizontal slats that serve as the back support.  The design of the chair is reminiscent of a ladder.  Some of the other names of this chair are ladder-back chair, slatback chair or even fiddle back chair.

*Picture courtesy of Wikipedia*

This is just a few of the designs that you will see.  What have you run across?

Great vintage items that you can decorate your home with

There are many items that you can use to decorate your home or apartment.  It could be anything–a great picture for the living room, a lamp for your bedroom, a vintage book for the corner of a desk or table, or even a vase on a table holding a bouquet of your favorite flowers.

One such thing that you can use is this terrific lot of two silhouettes.

One of the great things about this pair is that they don’t take up a ton of room on the wall–the small one measures 9 inches by 12 inches while the large one measures 9 3/4 inches by 12 3/4 inches.  You can see the pair in my Etsy store here.

Another great item to decorate item to decorate with is this terrific planter from McCoy.

The planter dates to the 1950’s and it has a Greek Key pattern on both the top and the bottom of it.  Not only would it be a great planter, it would be great as a pencil or pen holder for a desk.  You can see this great find in my Etsy shop here.

Another great item to decorate with that doesn’t take up a ton of room is this great table lamp.

The lamp dates to the 1950’s and sports a gazelle (or even a deer) motif, and it would be a great gift for the avid hunter.  I love that it’s green and brown and would look great with just about any color combination in any room.  This great lamp can be seen in my Etsy shop here.

As a matter of fact, you can see more terrific items to decorate your home with in my Etsy shop here.  Head on over and check them out!

Grab yourself a cup and saucer, it’s tea time!

One of the areas that you can dive in and have a lot of fun collecting are cups and saucers.  They come in a wide variety of makers, sizes and even decoration.

Some of the materials that they could be made of are glassware, pottery or even fine china.  They could be decorated with just about anything–flowers, people and even outdoor scenes are just a small portion of what is out there.

Hocking Glass, MacBETH-Evans and even Royal Doulton are but a tiny portion of makers that have made cups and saucers, and there are many more.

One cup and saucer set that you could run across is this great Depression Glass example.

As you can see, it sports the CHERRY BLOSSOM pattern and is by the Jeanette Glass Company.  It was made from 1930 to 1939 and can be found in my Etsy shop here.

Hand painted examples are always fun for me, you will never find two that are exactly alike.  One cup and saucer set that fits in this area is this one by NAPCO Pottery.

This set features a yellow floral motif, and it dates to the 1950’s.  You can see it in my Etsy shop here.

Wedgewood also made several examples, and one such example is this terrific Mulberry handle less cup and saucer from the 1800’s.

It sports the WASHINGTON VASE pattern, and you can see it in my Etsy shop here.

There are quite a few ways that you can collect cups and saucers.  Not only can you collect cups and saucers by the pattern that is on them or the manufacturer, you can also find examples that could go with a certain color combination that is in your house or apartment.

You can see all of the cups and saucers in my Etsy shop here.  Head on over and check them out!